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Heyward leadoff homer helps Braves beat Mets 3-2

Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) Braves pitchers are thankful Andrelton Simmons is their shortstop and not another powerful pitching arm.

The 24-year old would not sign with Atlanta in 2010 unless the Braves allowed him to remain in the infield.

With the potential tying run on third base in the eighth inning Wednesday night, he ranged onto the outfield grass to snag Travis d'Arnaud's grounder, then made a one-hop throw to first baseman Freddie Freeman. That preserved the lead as the Braves beat the New York Mets 3-2 behind Julio Teheran's strong start to stop a three-game losing streak.

''Two out, man on third, not only does he make the play, but he makes an accurate throw to first base,'' Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said. ''Today, Teheran should take him out to dinner because he saved him the win.''

Teheran (13-9) gave up three hits in 6 1-3 innings, struck out four and walked two.

''My fastball was working and I threw my changeup more,'' he said. ''I think that's how I got them off-balance.''

Jason Heyward connected on Zack Wheeler's third pitch of the game for his 11th homer of the season.

After Wilmer Flores' home run tied the game in the second, the Braves went ahead for good in the third when Phil Gosselin reached on a bunt single, Freddie Freeman doubled, Justin Upton hit a broken-bat RBI groundout and shortstop Ruben Tejada allowed Evan Gattis' two-out bouncer to pop out of his glove for a run-scoring error.

''Justin's at-bat was huge,'' Heyward said. ''It was a broken bat and scored the go-ahead run. When you put the ball in play, it puts pressure on the defense. And then when Gattis put the ball in play, they made an error and it led to another run.''

Craig Kimbrel allowed Eric Campbell's leadoff single in the ninth and walked Matt den Dekker. After Flores sacrificed, Gosselin threw out Campbell at the plate on Tejada's grounder to third and pinch-hitter Kirk Nieuwenhuis flied hit a game-ending flyout. Kimbrel got his 39th save in 43 chances.

Juan Lagares had an RBI single in the eighth off Jordan Walden before Lucas Duda grounded into a double play.

Then came Simmons' sterling throw.

''It looks like he has no chance, and then in the last second, he just reaches for it and throws it,'' d'Arnaud said. ''What a great play.''

Wheeler (9-9) gave up three runs - two earned - four hits and three walks in seven innings with seven strikeouts. He had been 6-0 with a 2.12 ERA in 10 starts since losing to Oakland on June 25.

Atlanta began the night 1 1/2 games behind San Francisco for the second NL wild card.


Braves: LHP Jonny Venters has been told to stop throwing following recurring soreness in his surgically repaired elbow. Venters has had two Tommy John reconstructive surgeries and was examined Wednesday by Dr. James Andrews. ... RHP Gavin Floyd will not throw until October following a visit with Mets medical director Dr. David Altchek on Tuesday. The right-hander is recovering from June surgery to repair a fractured elbow. ... 3B Chris Johnson was given the day off.

Mets: RHP Vic Black (neck) and LHP Josh Edgin (elbow) both remained unavailable. Mets manager Terry Collins said the team will be without Black for a couple of days and said Edgin is dealing with a bone spur-like issue. ... 2B Daniel Murphy (calf) and David Wright (neck) remained out of the lineup; Wright took a few swings in the indoor batting cages prior to the game. ''Today's the day where he needs to do some stuff and to see how he comes out of it,'' Collins said.


Mike Minor (5-8, 4.90 ERA) pitches Thursday night for Atlanta against New York's Jonathon Niese (7-9, 3.47 ERA) in a matchup of left-handers in the series finale. This will be the fourth career matchup between the two.


New York has homered in eight straight games for the first time since starting 2013 with 12 in a row.


Wheeler has not allowed multiple home runs in his last 37 starts.


Atlanta improved to 22-22 in one-run games this year, and the Mets dropped to 20-26.

Copyright 2016 by STATS LLC. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC is strictly prohibited.
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Players of the Game
New York

W. Flores
AB 2
R 1
H 1
HR 1

J. Heyward
AB 4
R 1
H 1
HR 1

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Atlanta Braves
Jason Heyward, RF4111000.270.351.391
Phil Gosselin, 3B4110020.300.327.380
Freddie Freeman, 1B3110110.292.387.481
Justin Upton, LF4001011.289.363.522
Evan Gattis, C4010020.275.330.514
   Emilio Bonifacio, PR0000000.275.314.356
   Gerald Laird, C0000000.219.296.277
Tommy La Stella, 2B3010101.268.346.342
Andrelton Simmons, SS4000004.249.294.348
B.J. Upton, CF2000110.204.281.323
Julio Teheran, P3000012.086.117.103
   David Carpenter, P0000000.000.000.000
   Jordan Walden, P0000000.000.000.000
   Craig Kimbrel, P0000000.000.000.000
2B - Freddie Freeman (37, Wheeler), Tommy La Stella (15, Wheeler)
HR - Jason Heyward (11, Wheeler)
RBI - Jason Heyward (53), Justin Upton (88)
Team LOB - 4
DP - La Stella-Simmons-Freeman
Atlanta Braves
Julio Teheran (W,13-9) 6.1311241 2.90
David Carpenter (H,14) 0.2000000 3.51
Jordan Walden (H,18) 1211100 2.32
Craig Kimbrel (S,39) 1100100 1.73
WP - Jordan Walden (8)
Pitches-Strikes - Julio Teheran 101-60, David Carpenter 10-7, Jordan Walden 12-7, Craig Kimbrel 21-11
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Julio Teheran 6-9, David Carpenter 1-1, Jordan Walden 2-0, Craig Kimbrel 2-1
Batters Faced - Julio Teheran 24, David Carpenter 2, Jordan Walden 5, Craig Kimbrel 5
New York (N.L.) Mets
Curtis Granderson, RF3000110.217.322.368
Juan Lagares, CF4021000.282.319.393
Lucas Duda, 1B4000012.255.349.499
Travis d'Arnaud, C4000002.229.292.397
Eric Campbell, 3B4020000.293.341.401
Matt den Dekker, LF2000210.188.274.235
Wilmer Flores, 2B2111102.224.258.301
Ruben Tejada, SS4000013.228.342.285
Zack Wheeler, P2000001.071.093.095
   Buddy Carlyle, P00000001.0001.0001.000
   a-Eric Young Jr., PH1110000.227.303.307
   Carlos Torres, P0000000.000.000.000
   b-Kirk Nieuwenhuis, PH1000002.240.314.453
a-singled for Carlyle in the 8th
b-flied out for Torres in the 9th
HR - Wilmer Flores (2, Teheran)
SH - Wilmer Flores (1)
RBI - Juan Lagares (41), Wilmer Flores (15)
2-OUT RBI - Wilmer Flores (9)
Team LOB - 7
DP - Tejada-Flores-Duda, Tejada-Flores-Duda-Flores-Tejada-Duda
E - Ruben Tejada (6, Misplayed grounder)
New York (N.L.) Mets
Zack Wheeler (L,9-9) 7432371 3.44
Buddy Carlyle 1000010 1.27
Carlos Torres 1100000 3.33
IBB - Upton by Zack Wheeler
Pitches-Strikes - Zack Wheeler 112-69, Buddy Carlyle 13-7, Carlos Torres 5-4
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Zack Wheeler 13-1, Buddy Carlyle 1-1, Carlos Torres 1-1
Batters Faced - Zack Wheeler 28, Buddy Carlyle 3, Carlos Torres 3
Game Information
Attendance - 22014
Game Time - 2:48
Temperature - 83
Umpires - Home - Mike Muchlinski, First Base - Mark Wegner, Second Base - Mike Winters, Third Base - Andy Fletcher